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Jul18

Alabama Short Term Disability

I’m unable to work for 3 weeks due to a non-work-related auto accident. In

Alabama, am I entitled to disability pay under any state or federal law?

Unfortunately, there is no Alabama or federal law that guarantees you income when you have a short-term disability, whether it’s due to a heart attack, cancer treatment, pregnancy or an auto accident – or any other cause. Under a federal program, Social Security pays disability benefits, but only to those with permanent disabilities.

If you were injured at work, then workers’ compensation kicks in. Under those conditions, you might well be entitled to disability pay and medical benefits.

Check with your employer’s benefits coordinator to see what options are available for you. Many companies choose to provide short-term disability benefits to their workers (although there is no law requiring that they do so.) Many employers require that employees use any accrued sick or vacation time, before collecting short term disability pay. Others provide short-term disability insurance as an optional add-on to the group healthcare insurance, at an additional cost.

In many cases, if you are unable to work because you have a “serious medical condition” that is certified by a doctor, you should qualify for leave under FMLA, the federal Family and Medical Leave Act. FMLA provides you with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year, as long as you are eligible.

Under the Pregnancy Disability Act, an employer who does provide paid leave for other types of disabilities must provide the same benefits to pregnant women who are on medical disability.

However, there is no law that an  Alabama employer must provide any benefits to workers on short-term disability.

Five states in the U.S. do have state laws requiring short term disability benefits for all employees. These states are: California, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and

Hawaii. In some cases, as in

Rhode Island, the state provides disability insurance that is funded through employee payroll deductions.  In other cases, the state merely requires that employers automatically provide short-term disability coverage to employees.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, July 18th, 2007 at 9:07 pm and is filed under
Attendance Management, Benefits, Human Resources Management, Labor Laws.
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